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International Journal of Photoenergy
Volume 2013, Article ID 206129, 7 pages
Research Article

Kinetics and Photodegradation Study of Aqueous Methyl tert-Butyl Ether Using Zinc Oxide: The Effect of Particle Size

1Chemistry Department, College of Applied Sciences, Umm Al-Qura University, Makkah 21955, Saudi Arabia
2Chemistry Department, College of Sciences, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah 21589, Saudi Arabia
3Chemistry Department, College of Sciences, King Fahd University of Petroleum & Minerals, Dhahran 31261, Saudi Arabia
4Center for Refining & Petrochemicals, Research Institute, King Fahd University of Petroleum & Minerals, Dhahran 31261, Saudi Arabia

Received 27 April 2013; Revised 24 July 2013; Accepted 25 August 2013

Academic Editor: Meenakshisundaram Swaminathan

Copyright © 2013 Zaki S. Seddigi et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Zinc oxide of different average particle sizes 25 nm, 59 nm, and 421 nm as applied in the photodegradation of MTBE. This study was carried out in a batch photoreactor having a high pressure mercury lamp. Zinc oxide of particle size of 421 nm was found to be the most effective in degrading MTBE in an aqueous solution. On using this type of ZnO in a solution of 100 ppm MTBE, the concentration of MTBE has decreased to 5.1 ppm after a period of five hours. The kinetics of the photocatalytic degradation of MTBE was found to be a first order reaction.